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Mad Max: Fried dominates Padres as Braves win seventh straight

An early Austin Riley homer was the difference in Petco Park on Monday.

MLB: Atlanta Braves at San Diego Padres Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

The Braves won their seventh in a row on Monday night, beating the Padres 2-0 to improve their record to 13-4.

The early offense continued once again as Ronald Acuña Jr. shot a ball past Manny Machado to lead things off, and after a sharp line out from Matt Olson, Austin Riley rocketed a ball down the left field line for a 2-0 lead.

The offense remained quiet until the fifth when the club loaded the bases with no one out ahead of Olson and Riley, but a brutal sequence occurred; Olson struck out on three pitches and Riley swung over a first-pitch changeup for a breezy 5-4-3 double play. It was an opportunity to blow the game wide open, and they missed. Fortunately, it would prove to not matter as the pitching was superb all evening.

Max Fried, making his return to the mound for the first time since the season opener on March 30, was dominant over five innings and 79 pitches. He set down the final 10 batters he faces from the second to the fifth innings, dicing up the San Diego lineup with his hard fastball and velvety curve. Fried’s velocity was strong despite the couple of weeks away, hitting 97.6 on the radar gun and sitting mid-90s most of the evening.

Dylan Lee took over for Fried and tossed two dominant innings, striking out four while giving up just one hit.

With Nick Anderson presumably unavailable after working both games over the weekend, Jesse Chavez entered the eighth to protect the 2-0 lead. A bloop single and walk put two on for Manny Machado, but a rocket up the middle went right to Ozzie Albies for a 4-3 double play.

In the ninth, A.J. Minter entered and worked a perfect 1-2-3 inning.

The series continues in beautiful San Diego on Tuesday evening as Spencer Strider takes the mound against Blake Snell, a rematch of the Braves’ home opener on April 6. First pitch is set for 9:40 p.m. ET.

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